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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Tennessee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, February 7, 2019

Former Memphis Police Officer Sentenced to 96 Months in Federal Prison

Memphis, TN – Former Memphis Police Officer, Terrion Bryson, 26, has been sentenced to 96 months imprisonment for narcotics and weapons possession offenses committed while on duty. U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant announced the sentence today.

In early 2018, the FBI and MPD began a joint investigation of officers Kevin Coleman and Terrion Bryson. In April of 2018, Coleman and Bryson agreed to escort approximately 2.5 kilograms of heroin to a storage facility in Memphis. Coleman was on duty, in his MPD squad car, at the time of the escort. Bryson, not on duty at the time, but armed with a handgun, accompanied the driver, an undercover MPD officer, in the car with the heroin. Both Coleman and Bryson were arrested shortly thereafter.

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "A very low percentage of law enforcement officers engage in official misconduct and corruption, but when they do, it tarnishes the entire criminal justice system and damages the trust and confidence of citizens in proper police authority. When police officers use their badges to become drug dealers and highway robbers, it is our duty to expose their corruption, hold them accountable, and protect society from their dishonesty. This sentence will hopefully deter other corrupt police behavior, restore the public’s faith in honest officers, and send a message that nobody is above the law."

"No one is immune to consequences. If a law enforcement officer chooses to violate the law, swift action will be taken. It is our job to uphold the law, and that is what the officers of the Memphis Police Department will continue to do," said Michael Rallings, Director, Memphis Police Department.

"Law enforcement officers who use their position for private gain undermine the integrity of and erode the public’s trust in the very framework of our justice system," says M.A. Myers, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Memphis Field Office. "The vast majority of law enforcement officers at the local, state and federal level are honest and dedicated professionals who strive every day to uphold the law and protect their communities. Unfortunately, there is a small percentage who violate the public trust, and the FBI will continue to target them as our top criminal investigative priority."

On February 7, 2019, U.S. District Court Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr., sentenced Bryson to 96 months imprisonment followed by 5 years of supervised release. Bryson entered a guilty plea on November 19, 2018. Co-defendant Kevin Coleman, also a former Memphis Police Officer, was previously sentenced to 120 months imprisonment.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Tarnished Badge Task Force and the Memphis Police Department Organized Crime Unit.

Assistant U.S. Attorney David Pritchard prosecuted this case on the government’s behalf.

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Contact: 
Cherri Green Public Information Officer Cherri.Green@usdoj.gov 901-544-4231
Updated February 7, 2019